The Relationship Between Self-esteem and Behavior

Post your response to the following: Research has demonstrated that people with high self-esteem are generally happier, less depressed, and more likely to enjoy social activity; however, is having high self-esteem always a good thing?

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The one statement that struck me in the text was that most social and personal problems are not caused by a lack of self-esteem. In my view, self-esteem is not a tool to be used to cure social or personal problems, but rather a preventative measure. It is kind of like taking vitamins. You don’t take them to get rid of a cold; rather you take them to prevent a cold by keeping yourself healthy. In the same way, self-esteem cannot be used to cure social ills but rather to ward off future social and personal problems. Likewise, too much of anything is not good. There is always a balance which should be maintained. I think it is important to know who you are and who you are not. You are a person, worthy of praise, accomplishment, and happiness. You are not god, and therefore not worthy of worship.   

How might someone with high self-esteem be more likely to act inappropriately in certain situations?

I have suffered from high self-esteem most of my adult life. I have always thought that the world would be a better place if I were ruling it, not to the exclusion of God, but maybe in a “Bruce Almighty” sort of way. High self-esteem has not always served me well though. I sound like a know-it-all like I think I am better than other people. I have had to learn to shut up, sit down, and be a part of the team; rather than try to be the team. If I am not sure if I should say something, then I probably shouldn’t. When I do say things when I think that I shouldn’t I always look back with regret. Those are my lowest moments.

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Bolt, M. (2004). Pursuing human strengths: A positive psychology guide. New York, NY: Worth Publishing.


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